Tuesday March 28, 2023

Defacement of public property goes unchecked

By Our Correspondent
September 04, 2022

Rawalpindi : The defacement of public property continues to go unchecked in Rawalpindi, as the district administration, as well as the Municipal Corporation, seems to have failed in initiating any strong action in this regard.

“Be it the walled city area, a posh locality, or even a slum unit, posters defacing walls and public property stare at the onlooker any place you visit,” says Zulfiqar Ali.

“Travel anywhere in the city, one finds a number of such posters, hoardings, displayed in violation of the rules. Notably, these illegal hoardings and posters are also causing loss to the private contractors who have some sites for advertisement in the city,” adds Zulfiqar.

“I have got the prominent sites of advertisement in the city on contract but failed to make any profit. The influential people don’t bother the rules and the officials are unable to take any action against them,” says Ashiq Hussain, a Saddar-based private advertisement contractor who suffered a huge loss in this business.

When contacted, Safeer Ali, a city administration official says, “We have issued some challans in the past to those who defaced the public property. Besides, when it comes to our notice that many posters and hoardings are on display without obtaining any permission, we remove them.”

“Defacement of public property continues in the city. Overhead bridges in the city have turned into a popular space to paste advertisements. Such is the case of the overhead bridge near Shah Khalid Colony,” says Murad Hasan.

“Such things are often ignored as these do not fall under the category of heinous crimes. These are minor things but in the end, leave an impact. The defacement of public properties is not a new thing. It has been going on for a long time; violators have spoiled even murals,” says Irfan Jafary. “All I can say is that it takes time to build infrastructure but people deface these by putting posters. The remnants of some worn-out posters still portray ugly looks, “adds Irfan.

“Several gates and walls of private and government buildings remain covered with commercial bills and posters or wall writing. The violators are dengue spray or polio drops groups mostly women who deface the newly painted gates and walls of the residential buildings,” says Imdad Husain.

“Even the boundary walls of schools, colleges, and hospitals are replete with numerous advertisements. These walls wear ugly looks with commercial posters and wall writings. Similar is the plight of boundary walls of bus shelters and even electrical poles across the city have not been spared,” says Manzar Zaidi.

Azhar Abbas says, “It is surprising that the district administration hardly bothers to penalise the offenders whose addresses are always mentioned below the posters and wall writings. Posters and wall writings inevitably carry the identifications of organisations or individuals who paste or write them.”